Raw Food Diet

Has anyone tried the raw food diet, or made it a lifestyle choice? I’m not so much concerned about weight management as I am about making healthier choices. I’ve been feeling sluggish lately and I’ve been thinking about trying this for a while.

Anyone have experiences to share? What do you eat aside from fruits, veg, nuts, and grain?

Are you a raw food vegetarian or do you eat meat and milk and eggs etc?

I’ve done a raw food vegetarian diet but I love nuts, so it didn’t bother me much. It’s not hard to keep on it, but you have to spend a LOT Of time looking for food to fit it and it does cost a lot.

I had a friend who did the raw food thing. She spent a lot time time making bizarre things out of ground up nuts. Ever had a raw peanut “cheesecake”? Blegh.

It seems a little extreme- I mean we are talking pretty much no eating out, no eating at friend’s houses, etc. In my opinion it borders “eating disorder” territory- you are putting a lot of restrictions on yourself for no good reason. The best thing you can do for your health (and energy level) is eat a well-rounded and varied diet. You probably aren’t going to get that from a raw food diet.

Why not commit to eating a raw food lunch? This will motivate you to bring more fresh fruits and veggies into your life without restricting you socially or forcing you into a narrow diet.

I did a research project on raw foodist and went raw for about a week. I’d be happy to share my experiences with you. (I bet this thread ends up getting moved to another area.) I was more interested in the raw food lifestyle then I was with the nutritional information.

There are a lot of different kinds of raw foodist. Generally speaking most of them believe that any food item cooked above 115 degrees kills the enzymes necessary to promoting good health. Most of them avoided processed foods like the plague but it was ok to eat dried fruits and veggies. The vast majority of the ones I came into contact with were vegans though a few of them ate raw meat on occasion.

The raw food community is really big on so called “super foods”. When I was studying them one of the popular super foods were goji berries (wolf berries) which could be eaten dried or fresh. Other super foods include almost anything in smoothie form and for a few of them that meant raw meat smoothies. Durians seemed to be making its way into the community and there was a lot of interest in that as a superfood.

In general I found that as a community they had a profound distrust of the government and little respect for the opinion of the medical establishment. For example the majority of the ones I ran into believed it was necessary to undergo colonic irrigation on a regular basis in order to remove mucoid plaque from their intestines. I could find no medical basis for the belief in mucoid plaque though this seems to be a widespread belief among the community. They also advocate fasting every once in a while and some of them believed that it was possible to eventually be able to forgo food altogether and receive sustenance directly from the sun.

Among a significant minority I found a seemingly magical relationship between food and people. There was a belief that a raw food diet could cure cancer, AIDS, mercury poisoning, etc. Among the vegan portion of the population there was a belief in sympathetic magic in that when eating the flesh an animal you are literally consuming the pain, hatred, and the very soul of the animal.

If you’re on a raw food diet then grains are pretty much verboten. There are a wide variety of raw food “cook” books available for sale and recipes on the web. At one raw food pot luck someone made “ice cream” using mashed frozen bananas and some other ingredients I can’t think of off the top of my head.

David Wolfe is probably the best known raw food “guru.” There are others and many of them make outrageous claims. There are other raw foodist including Christians who adopt the Hallelujah Diet which they believe was what men ate before the flood of Noah.

A lot of the testimonials I heard was that people who switched to a raw food diet had more energy and more than a few of them claimed they shed dozens of pounds and feel much healthier. I’m not from Missouri but I’m a show me kind of guy and I haven’t seen any reliable data to back up the majority of their claims.


Another thing that I found was that a lot of them stopped hanging out with their non-raw friends and in some cases even their family members. For most of them this appeared to be a short term situation but for others it appeared to be permanent.


My mother inflicted this upon me when I was younger. We ate a lot of fruit, vegetables, nuts and sprouted grains, usually combining them in some way to try to make them more palatable.

Like blending up a bunch of vegetables to make a cold, bland soup.

Or maybe grinding up some nuts and dried fruit to make cold, bland “cookies”.

Or you could grind up the sprouted grains and put them in a dehydrator to make cold, bland flat bread.

Why, there are a million possibilities!

Some of it was incredibly good (there was a “cake” that was like eating candy. It also cost about thirty dollars for the ingredients and was tiny). The main thing was that it either took a lot of money and preparation to make interesting meals, or else you just sort of “grazed” and got bored fast. I did feel pretty good while I was on it, as far as my health went, but that probably had more to do with successfully avoiding all of my allergens by completely eliminating processed foods.

Really, the main thing that raw food has going for it is the lack of processing. You get a ton of complex carbohydrates and fiber. If you’re ensuring that you’re getting protein and fats (getting lots of nuts and legumes into your diet is very, very important) you’ll be alright for the most part, but it can be difficult and, frankly, eating starts to feel like a chore at times. If you allowed yourself some meat or dairy, it’d be easier.